Sleeping disorders have become prevalent and insomnia is the leading sleep disorder. But, how to tell if you have insomnia? Get insights into the symptoms and causes of this sleep disorder.
Very many people suffer from a number of different sleeping disorders the most common one being insomnia. We will do our best to enlighten you on how to tell if you have insomnia so as to enable you to stay ahead of the disorder.
There are two types of insomnia: acute insomnia and chronic insomnia. Acute insomnia occurs for a night or lasts for a few weeks while chronic insomnia will occur for 3 nights a week for about a month or even last longer.
Causes of insomnia
According to reliable studies and research by organizations like The National Sleep Foundation, there are a number of things that can cause acute insomnia. The following are some of these factors:
- A major life’s stress: These include events such as the loss of a job, divorce, moving from your current living location or even the death of a loved one.
- Medications which can cause loss of sleep: These include some high blood pressure meds, depression meds etc.
- When your normal sleep schedule is interrupted either by changing your works shift or traveling
- When you are suffering from physical or emotional discomfort such as pain or a strain in a relationship or an uncomfortable mattress or pillow.
- If you are sick you may be unable to fall asleep easily.
The following are some of the factors that can cause chronic insomnia:
- If you are suffering from anxiety or depression
- If you are under constant stress
- When you are plagued with a constant pain or discomfort during the night
Symptoms of insomnia
The following are signs that you may be suffering from a type of insomnia:
- Having difficulty in falling asleep or having to wake up many times in the middle of the night.
- When you wake up at night and then you find it hard to go back to sleep
- Feeling tired and sleepy during the day because you were unable to sleep at night.
- Being irritable and sometimes even feeling depressed during the day.
- You may suffer from poor concentration or even have very poor memory.
- Feeling drowsy in the morning once you wake up.
- You have a higher risk of accidents at work or even in traffic due to lack of focus.
- You may suffer from restless legs syndrome which is a painful, tingling feeling in your legs.
Effects of insomnia
Not getting enough sleep can have some very negative effects on both your health and social life. The following are some of the side-effects you may be faced with due to insomnia:
- Some people may suffer from obesity
- It can lead to premature aging
- You may suffer from stomach problems such as indigestion and ulcers
- You may be at a higher risk of getting diseases search as diabetes and heart diseases
- You may suffer from chronic memory loss
- Your immune system may be compromised if you don’t get enough sleep
Treatment for insomnia
The treatment you will be put on will depend on the type of insomnia that you suffer from.
If you are suffering from acute insomnia then there is a probability that you may not require any treatment.
Mild insomnia, on the other hand, can be prevented by just practicing some good sleeping habits. Sometimes your healthcare provider may decide to prescribe you sleeping pills if the insomnia is interrupting your normal day to day activities.
When it comes to chronic insomnia, the underlying health conditions that may be causing it will have to be treated first and if the condition persists then you will be put under behavioral therapy. These may include sleep restriction therapy, relaxation exercises and even reconditioning.
Sleeping habits that will help treat insomnia
The following are some of the good sleeping habits that will help you combat insomnia and ensure that you are able to get your sleeping under control.
- Try and go to bed at the same time every night and also wake up at the same time every morning. You can even decide to use an alarm clock to help you with this and also avoid taking naps during the days so as to prevent you from having less sleep at night
- Avoid taking a lot of caffeine during the day as this may cause you to have difficulty getting sleep at night.
- Avoid drinking alcohol late in the day as it may cause you to wake up frequently during the night thus lowering the quality of sleep you get.
- Avoid using electronic devices such as phones and e-books at night as they emit a lot of light that can make it hard for you to fall asleep
- Ensure that your sleep environment is comfortable enough by dimming the lights, adjusting the temperature so that it is neither too hot or too cold, and eliminating all noise
As we have been able to learn, insomnia is a condition that can affect anyone. The factors that bring about insomnia are things that we face on a daily basis but as long as we learn to manage them we can avoid insomnia.
Insomnia is mostly brought about by practicing poor sleeping habits. This is something that we can all avoid by just implementing a few changes in our life that will surely reduce our stress levels and ensure that we give our minds and bodies the rest they require.
The symptoms and effects of insomnia we have given will guide you on how to tell if you have insomnia. If you suspect that you are suffering from insomnia it is advisable to notify your physician so that you can start on treatment right away.
Don’t let your life or health suffer because you cannot sleep for a few hours and allow your body and mind to recharge. As you now know sleep is very important.